Here's a great article from the CBC about the NASCAR phenomenon on TV.
And once again you have yet another Canadian expressing surprise that NASCAR is doing so well in the ratings in Canada. NASCAR is such a blue-collar, jingoistic American sport- why would any hockey-loving Canadian want to watch that? That's always the tone of the coverage up here.
Well one reason is that people haven't had much choice in the matter this season because of the lockout, but there are other factors.
Frankly, auto racing of all kinds has always been pretty big up in Canada and has always had a lot of fans, and I think the race fans appreciate NASCAR as the big thing these days. It's an especially well-run and well promoted sport which is very fan friendly and loaded with interesting personalities. And it hasn't had any of the problems suffered by the other auto racing circuits, like the infamous CART-IRL split. And Formula 1 is a joke these days.
Plus, being a sport that celebrates its blue-collar roots is a plus in NASCAR's favor. So many of these sports these days seem to have forgotten the hard-working fans that support it. Not NASCAR. The tickets may cost a fortune but at least your favorite country music stars will sing the national anthem.
And people forget, there are lots of Canadians who have a lot in common with NASCAR fans- they live in the country and work hard to support their families. I could see NASCAR doing well in a place like, uh, Saskatchewan. Really.
Speaking of auto racing there's a CHAMPCAR race this week in Toronto, the Molson Indy, so expect to see a lot of stories about auto racing this week.